Like everyone, I cycle through recipes. I try a lot of new ones for my job at The New York Times, and I shuffle through a pile I keep as inspiration for other writing projects. Some I try only once. Others, I come back to again and again, until I get it right or get bored or both. Then there are the recipes that I always use. They are family recipes or dishes that were so good -- or so easy and so good -- that they became part of the rotation at my house. Here are some of those constants, including recipes from Spoon Fed.

Kim's Favorite Recipes

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Aunt Phil’s Melanzane, with a Tiny Variation

Hot, fresh peppers
Olive oil


1. Peel eggplant and slice as thin, salt and let it sit overnight.

2. Put in a press and squeeze out all the moisture. (Use two plates weighted with a can, or put the slices in a colander with towels on top and then a can on top of the towels. Or, like my brother, use an old necktie press.)

3. Slice the hot peppers and garlic thin.

4. Boil the vinegar and blanch each slice in the hot liquid for about 10 seconds.

5. Pack in layers in pint ring-top jars and fill with olive oil.

Note: You can eat the melanzane in a day or two, or can preserve it by using the cold-pack canning method.